2017 Hall of Fame Honoree
Robert A. (Bob) Wright attended public school in Oklahoma City before enrolling at Oklahoma Military Academy as a sophomore. He graduated from OMA in 1953 with the rank of Platoon Master Sargent. His platoon, under the command of Lt. Harry Porch, was the outstanding platoon that year. Having lettered in four sports during his senior year, he was awarded the Outstanding High School Athlete trophy.
Wright enrolled at Oklahoma A&M in the School of Architecture and his freshman year was selected to play on the Oklahoma A&M freshman basketball team under legendary Coach Henry Iba. During his senior year, he taught a design course for freshman students. He graduated in 1958 from Oklahoma State University with a bachelor’s degree in architecture.
His first employment was with an Oklahoma City architecture firm, Caudill Rowlett Scott. Transferring to the Houston office, he was promoted to an associate with large project responsibilities. His work included many of the original space lab buildings for NASA at the Johnson Space Center. He was also responsible for numerous projects through-out the United States including significant projects at Harvard and Duke universities.
In 1966, he returned to Oklahoma City to become principal and shareholder with the firm Locke Smith, which became Locke Smith Wright. The firm today is known as LWPB Architecture and is celebrating its 54th year in business, with offices in Oklahoma City and Norman. Among the many projects he was involved with was the former Alfred P. Murrah Federal Building and numerous educational, commercial, public and financial institutions throughout Oklahoma, Texas, Kansas and Arkansas. He designed projects for Rogers State University in Claremore and Pryor and numerous projects for the Claremore school system, most recently the high school gymnasium and numerous classroom additions.
The Oklahoma State University School of Architecture asked him to develop a course in construction document for the senior class. He developed this course and was the instructor for four semesters while working full time at LWPB Architecture.
He was asked by the OMA Alumni Board to help develop a KIA Memorial to honor OMA Cadets who gave their lives in World War II, the Korean and Vietnam wars. The memorial has become a focal point on this campus honoring former OMA cadets and their sacrifice.
His local Oklahoma activities included two terms as President of the Central Oklahoma Chapter of the American Institute of Architects (AIA), President of the Oklahoma City Downtown Lions Club, Chairman of the AIA fund raising golf tournament, Assistant Coach for the 1st Tee organization of Oklahoma City serving underprivileged youth, and numerous activities at the Methodist Church of the Servant.
Wright was selected as an OMA Distinguished Alumni in 2002 and established the Verna J. Wright Student Academic Scholarship honoring his mother, who sacrificed dearly to send him to Oklahoma Military Academy.
He is very proud of his family, including his wife Carolyn, six children, 21 grandchildren and 11 great grandchildren.
Wright said he was deeply honored to be selected for the Hall of Fame and he shares this award with so many OMA Alumni who had a very positive influence in his life.